Everton finished the 2018/19 campaign with a flourish to claim a respectable eighth-placed finish in the Premier League.
The Toffees were inconsistent for large periods of the season and that hampered their chances of qualifying for Europe. Wins in the latter stages against Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal, however, ensured par for the course.
The summer looks set to be crucial for Marco Silva. He will need to add some genuine quality to his squad to ensure a better tilt at European qualification during 2019/20.
Sky Sports have reported that Marseille star Kevin Strootman has been offered to Everton on loan. West Ham United and Manchester United have also been given the chance to land the midfielder on a temporary basis.
Reasons to be cheerful
At face value, it might not seem like an amazing deal. A French club who have struggled this season offering one of their players out on loan won’t excite Everton fans a great deal. A look at the bigger picture is perhaps required though.
Marseille need to trim their budget and yet they still don’t want to permanently offload Strootman, they are happy for someone to take him on loan. Risk-free, indeed, as if the move fails, the 29-year-old simply returns to France.
The Everton squad is relatively young. Strootman has spent his career playing for top clubs such as Roma, PSV and Marseille. The experience he could pass onto the likes of Tom Davies for a season could be invaluable for the youngster.
Finally, there is a case to suggest that Strootman is a much better option than Morgan Schneiderlin. The Dutch maestro would certainly oust him out of the team and improve Silva’s ranks.
Strootman cost Marseille £23 million last summer (Sky Sports) and the chance to get him for one season without a transfer fee shouldn’t be sniffed at.
If Everton do land him and Silva can get him up to top form, he could prove to be one of the signings of the summer.